We all know the story. Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco narrowly missed hitting the magic number of 4000 yards because of 32 dropped passes for nearly 500 more yards, easily ranking 1st in the league.
Here is the exact accounting for the drops and the culprits, per Sarah Ellison:
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Who made those drops? Torrey = 11 (2nd in NFL) Steve = 8 Daniels = 5 Jacoby = 5 Gillmore, Forsett = 2 Kamar, Pitta, Pierce, Taliaferro = 1</p>— Sarah Ellison (@sgellison) <a href="https://twitter.com/sgellison/status/622038316771340288">July 17, 2015</a></blockquote>
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Going down the list, something immediately jumps out at me: 3 of the top 4 are playing elsewhere in 2015. Those 3 accounted for 21 of the 32 drops, almost exactly 2/3 of the drops, despite only seeing 35% of the total targets (189 targets- 92 for Torrey, 79 for Daniels, and 18 for Jacoby; 541 total targets). Makes you wonder if tallying so many drops may have been a factor in letting Torrey Smith and Owen Daniels leave, and Jacoby Jones being cut.
So while we will never know if it was a factor, there is nowhere to go but up. Although Steve Smith had 8 drops, at least it was on a team leading 134 targets, 36 more than Torrey. Kamar Aiken, Marlon Brown, Crockett Gillmore, Justin Forsett, and Lorenzo Taliaferro all remain, and they combined for only 3 drops on 137 targets. And despite a reputation for having issues with drops, rookie wide receiver Breshad Perriman has looked pretty good in camp so far, and cannot possibly be worse with drops than Torrey Smith was last year.
With a pass happy coach, all is looking good for a big year from our passing game. As one of the bigger question marks for this team, if they perform as well as expected, this will be a big year for our franchise with a deep run in the playoffs!